utu is an innovative tax-free service for anyone who demand a higher VAT refund when shopping. Utu offers the highest VAT refund in over 50 countries globally.
Frequently Asked Questions
Getting Started With utu
To avoid administrative charges and other fees from other operators, head straight to the airport Customs or last point of departure. At times, the authorities may request to check on the purchased goods. The Customs officers will verify the documents and stamp on the Tax Free Form as proof of export. Without the stamp or a digital ‘Customs verification’, utu will not be able to send you the refund you deserve.
Note: Prepare the documents, your Tax Free Form, supported with your sales receipts to Customs to get an export validation.
utu app is available for download on the App Store, Google Play
A value-added tax (VAT), known in some countries as a goods and services tax (GST), is a tariff that is levied on most goods and services. VAT is the equivalent of sales tax in the United States. VAT is included in the purchase price of the goods.
Yes, if you reside outside of the country you are visiting as a tourist. You may have to show proof of your tourist status before departing the country to qualify for a refund. The residence as shown in your passport is taken as the place you permanently live.
Most authorized stores you visit as a tourist will offer you a tax refund, or a VAT refund. The shop will usually display a prominent sign in the window, advertising that it is a ‘tax-free’ or ‘VAT-free’ shop. The display may be in the local language. To be sure, ask the shop assistant if they provide this service. Many stores impose a minimum amount you will need to spend before qualifying for a VAT refund. As the shop assistant in advance what is the threshold applied to the purchase in order for you to qualify for a refund. At the checkout, you will need to show your passport or other identity proving your residence.
Yes, you need your passport for tax-free shopping. You will also need to request for a Tax Free Form at the shop. In many cases, the shop will use a third-party VAT Refund Operator to manage the refunds on its behalf.
My Account in utu App
Go to the ‘Login’ screen, tap on ‘Forgot Password’ after you have entered your email, and follow the instructions sent to your email
Definitely. Go to ‘Account’ > ‘Profile’ to edit the mobile number or email address. Once you have successfully changed the mobile number, you will receive an OTP to verify the new number.
You may enable Notifications on your device Settings. Notifications may include alerts, sounds and icon badges. These can be configured in the Settings.
Go to Settings in the utu App, and you will find 1. General 2. Tax Free. The filters allow you to enable the notifications. It is advisable to keep the notifications switched on for timely information for you to be alerted.
Go to “View and Edit Profile” in your utu app and press edit. At the bottom of screen, you have a choice to close your account by clicking “Delete profile”. Please remember you cannot terminate your account if you have any pending transactions.
About utu Tax Free Card
utu Tax Free Card offers at least 5% more than what you receive from other VAT refund operators (VROs). When you choose utu upon registration, you will be requested to activate a utu Tax Free Card. A unique 16 digit account number is created and issued. The utu Tax Free Card is a virtual card with a one year validity. utu refunds the VAT amount into your choice of refund method. The utu Tax Free Card is found in the utu app. The utu Tax Free Card is only used for VAT refunds.
utu Refund Methods
You have a choice to receive your tax refund in
- Cash to credit card or;
- Frequent Flyer Miles from utu Partners
Cash to Credit Card
On the average, utu refunds you 5% more than what you usually receive from other tax refund operators.
(example: Your purchase amount = €1,500 VAT included -> 20% VAT rate means €250 VAT -> you get USD181 or in your local currency)
Frequent Flyer Miles
When you choose to receive your refund in Frequent Flyer Miles, you will enjoy a 25% upsize in tax refund. The list of exclusive partners are found in the App > Select Refund method > Frequent Flyer Program.
(example: Your VAT refund is €250 / USD181, and you choose Frequent Flyer Program A. Frequent Flyer Program A offers 1 USD = 10 UTU Miles. 10 UTU Miles = 31 Frequent Flyer A Miles)
You will receive 25% more* when you convert your refunds to Miles.
*compared to your typical purchase amount listed on the websites
At utu, We empower Travelers with Choice and Convenience
We’ll be expanding our list of partners and refund options over the coming months. Become a utu insider and stay updated on our latest innovations!